Forest fire in the parks
Document Type: Journal Article
Author(s): C. E. Van Wagner
Publication Year: 1973

Cataloging Information

  • Abies spp.
  • Betula
  • Canada
  • climax vegetation
  • coniferous forests
  • deciduous forests
  • disturbance
  • fire adaptations (plants)
  • fire dependent species
  • fire frequency
  • fire intensity
  • fire management
  • forest management
  • human caused fires
  • lightning caused fires
  • national parks
  • Picea
  • Pinus
  • Populus
  • prescribed fires (chance ignition)
  • wildfires
  • wood
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: June 1, 2018
FRAMES Record Number: 35520
Tall Timbers Record Number: 9821
TTRS Location Status: In-file
TTRS Call Number: Fire File DDW
TTRS Abstract Status: Okay, Fair use, Reproduced by permission

This bibliographic record was either created or modified by the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and is provided without charge to promote research and education in Fire Ecology. The E.V. Komarek Fire Ecology Database is the intellectual property of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.


The suggestion that some forest fires should be allowed or even encouraged to burn in the large national and provincial parks is bound to evoke a wide range of reactions. For decades the forest authorities across Canada have spared no effort to convince people that forest fires are bad, should not be started, and should be put out as quickly as possible. Up to a point, this is as it should be, and nothing in this article should be construed as excuse for any citizen to relax his care with fire in the woods. Nevertheless, during the past few years certain cracks in this simple facade have begun to show. It has in fact become respectable in forestry circles to say that forest fires are not all bad, and that fire has a place in the natural forest scene. If this is so, then the implications for forest fire policy are important enough for the nation as a whole, but are especially far-reaching for the large parks, which are dedicated in varying degrees to preserving their forest ecosystems in a natural a state as possible.

Van Wagner, C. E. 1973. Forest fire in the parks. Journal of the National and Provincial Parks Association of Canada, no. June, p. 25-31.